Wednesday, September 26, 2012

To Boycott, Or Not ...

The search for the appropriate response to the travesty of the two CorpoRat wings of the Party of Property ostensibly contesting for  dominance continues to provoke thoughtful folks to seek alternatives to this damaged, seemingly useless electoral system that presents us with choices which make mockery of the concept of "choice."  

Many passionate folks are lined up to conduct a "voter boycott." I respect their views and, though I am not strongly in sympathy, I wish them luck, and bear them no animosity. But the intensity with folks hold and defend their positions has sometimes boiled with the intensity of a fraternal civil war among the political allies--but discursive adversaries--who, on the one hand, advocate boycott, and the others who have various other resistive strategies that involve voting. 

In 2008, in what was supposed to have been one of the most hotly contested races in a long time, only about 60% of eligible voters cast ballots in the presidential race--fewer than two thirds.

That means, of course, that for whatever reason, in an historically and rhetorically significant contest in 2008, around FORTY percent of the people "boycotted" it. Didn't vote. And they weren't missed. At least, not enough that serious efforts have been made to re-recruit the disaffected plurality.

I submit to you, they weren't missed by the parties or the candidates, who ALL want to preserve the electorate exactly as it was when they were elected. 

It's one of politics' dirty secrets: They HAVE to say they want everyone to vote, but it's not true. They only want those people to vote who will vote for them. 

So, though I fear I shall be remonstrated with for it, it seems to me that joining the Boycott, it seems to me you're just joining the already silent mass. You cannot march into the polling place and announce "I am not voting" and stomp out and expect to have an impact. 

(Of course, for ANY individual to have an "impact" without causing HAVOC is a moot point anymore, too, I know, but still...)

The point of boycotting is to express disenchantment and dissatisfaction with the present conditions by withholding your consent to be governed, as symbolized by the election of a new or renewed representative government.

Nothing is real, in Murka, unless it gets on MSM television, b'cast or cabloid. 

Do you REALLY think the CorpoRat/MSM/SCUM "press" is gonna devote a lot of time to people peacefully not voting? 

Already almost one whole THIRD of the eligible population already abstains from exercising the franchise (around 60 MILLION eligible voters). That was the number in '08 when more folks than ever turned out. 

How does someone think you're "decision" to boycott distinguishes you from the millions who don't vote from apathy or ennui?? 

The vote-counters don't know or care. Abstaining won't change the outcome--won't even be noticed

How do you make YOUR non-vote in principle distinct from the non-vote from apathy? 

When they count the ballots, aren't you--don't you become--OBJECTIVELY (independent of your private intention)--indistinguishable?

 It would be different if only a few folks abstained, normally, and your abstention would significantly INCREASE that number. But already there are SIXTY MILLION who don't vote. How is your act a "protest" and how does anyone "tell?"

There is an argument that by voting, by recognizing the system, that you are assenting to your own oppression by voting, and there is something to that. "VOTING IS AGREEMENT TO BE GOVERNED BY WHOEVER WINS" the claim goes.

Woody demurz: It usta mean that.

It doesn't anymore.

The Rightards broke the compact in 1992, et seq. The refused to recognize the legitimacy of Clenis Clinton. Maybe you don't remember, but generals and admirals were openly insubordinate to Clinton.

Now they've delegitimized by St. Barry, the Timid, too... 

The whole "Democratic republic" thing always was/is terribly fragile. "A republic, if you can keep it," mused Franklin, on the clondlusion of the convention in Philadelphia. It was and is nothing so much as "gentleman's agreement," and it is falling apart under the influence of thugs and gunsels who declare themselves not bound by the popular will. 

Because the Constitution doesn't actually have any provisions to help handle this situation. So the FIRST group--the first "Party"--to intentionally violate the "rulez" was gonna win. 

This is how the "Business Coup" finally played out--successfully!

And it's not going "back." Because you cannot unshit the bed. We cannot go back to that more naive time, when people played mostly fair. The GOPhux learned that.

It was ALWAYS BEEN possible to fuck it up. The Trusts tried it in the Gilded Age, but TR and the State fought 'em off. The GOPhux tried again in the late '30s, but Roosevelt had the sympathies of the press and turned it back.

So the owners made certain THAT wouldn't happen again, by buying up 95% of the critical capacity of the public media.

Coups ALWAYS take over the media, first thing. This coup started silently with EXTENSIVE, AGGRESSIVE, CONSUMPTIVE consolidation in the late 70s, and Clenis (again) ratified it all with the Communications Act of '96.

So, whatever was the case, ideally or in the mythology of the state, it no longer obtains.  But it's a matter of perspective, especially when neither voting nor not voting is not going to have ANY perceptible consequence.

I mean, that's right, innit? 1) Your vote doesn't "matter" individually. It's only essentially symbolic because NO ONE is actually bound by the tally. So 2) whether you vote or not is only a private gesture, an anecdote, if you will. And 3) as every 1st semester stats student knwos, anecdotes aren't data.

When you got that part figured out, come see me. Personally, I think the thing to do is to "waste" your vote. I'm impressed with Jill Stein. She cannot be elected, and if elected, she could not govern; that's given. But I like her passion, and her perspicacity. She's sharp.

Tell her I'll be at the beach, chers.

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

The Holy Fascisti, Batman!

With this image as context, lets' be historically clear about something: The "religious" colonists who settled New England, and whose "faith" left so indelible and still-raw brand on the tender hide of the new nation, didn't do so for religious freedom. Not for anybody ELSE, at least.

No. The Puritans migrated to the "New World" to establish "religiously" cleansed societies. They were NOT hospitable, in the least, to what they considered heresy, blasphemy, or apostasy.

Indeed, they KILLED people for it; others they banished: Roger Williams was banished to England by the Massachusetts Bay Colony for his beliefs in separation of church and state and freedom of religion. He fled and lived with the Narragansett Indians and formed Providence in 1636. Another famed heretic was Anne Hutchinson who was also banished for speaking out against the Church in Massachusetts Bay. She formed Portsmouth settlement. (Parenthetically: Two other settlements arose and all four joined together with permission from England to form Providence Plantations – later called Rhode Island.) 

Pay attention: There is NOTHING in there about religious tolerance, or freedom of conscience. The Puritans were the ORIGINAL "holy" fascisti... Ask the Quakers. The religious tension was more than just Catholic and Protestant; Puritans, Presbyterians, Quakers, Methodists, Baptists and others all had their own particular forms of worship and systems of belief. People who came to America in the 17th and 18th centuries were not seeking land of religious freedom for all so much as a land where they could practice their own form of religious intolerance free of interference from rival denominations.

‎"The "religious" colonists who founded most of the New England settlements were the original American Taliban, and their descendants continue to plague us.

You think I exaggerate?

Read "The Scarlet Letter!" They were under DIRECT religious scrutiny at ALL times. They had no choice about attending religious ceremonies. Every aspect of their lives was regulated by their church authorities.

Their elders and leaders were not interested in any KIND of religious tolerance. That was why they fled England, and were eventually dispatched even by the Dutch.

The Puritans were INSUFFERABLY INTOLERANT. It was they whom Rousseau had in mind when he banned the proselytizers from his City on the Hill.

The FOUNDERS, or at least those from Virginia, were not so attached to the Church as to the Company, and managed to impose the church-state separation by dint of a majority of delegates. Of the 13 original colonies, only 4 were "religious," five if you count Rhode Island. The secularists (well, they were mostly Deists, but whatever) had the "votes."

So the separation is embedded in the Constitution. I am entirely in consonance with the fellow who told some sanctimonious fraud of a Senator that the People's representatives placed their hands on the Bible when they swoare to uphold the Constitution, not the other way around, not on the Constitution swearing to uphold the Bible.

If you want to hear me swear some more on this topic, then meet me at the beach, chers.

Friday, September 14, 2012

Chimera of Anarchism

You can feel it. It's almost palpable. People are getting desperate. Time is growing short, along with the days, as the ineluctable and increasingly terrible reality of the impending Presidential "election" presses in on us. We shudder, collectively, with the two appallingly inadequate choices which it presents us. The partisans try to paint it as a choice of good v. evil. But we all know: Evil, greater and lesser, but still...

Under that pressure a LOT of energy and bits/bytes have expended trying to compose some practical, practicable alternative to our current, corrupt, compromised system, and one which constantly raises its head is "anarchism."

Usually, by this, people who advocate it mean: (Anarchism) the political theory that a community is best organized by the voluntary cooperation of individuals, rather than by a government, which is regarded as being coercive by nature.

 This is, at BEST, mere wishful thinking.

At worst, it's dangerous delusion.  Horizontal organization is practicable at the level of SMALL, homogeneous groups, but not at the level of large, heterogeneous ones..

This kind of social arrangement MAY be possible in very small, self-sufficient enclaves, but (like "communism," unfortunately, which worked wonderfully well within the walls of medieval monastic orders, but almost nowhere else), anarchism is totally impractical when encompassing the 7.01 BILLION human critters already inhabiting the planet.

It is not possible to have a large, complex human society without social organization. Hierarchy and social stratification are inevitable and unavoidable in conditions of "civilization," where heterogeneous groups are assembled and housed in "cities," where traditional tribal relations and practices commensurable with tribal culture are dissolved under the pressure of close, unavoidable association with biological and social exogenes.

Organization begets people who can organize (not EVERYONE can).

Organizers always arrange it so they have power.

That means "rules."

And that means a means of enforcing them.

Power concentration--the MEANS of rule enforcement--creates the necessary conditions for oligarchies. There's ALWAYS volunteers.

And the historical record is far from comforting in this matter: Down through the ages, anarchists have usually SWIFTLY become the new oligarchs once the "old order" falls.

We can assess the balance-of-power struggle when I see you at the beach Chers; bring a chair...Paz!

Friday, September 7, 2012

Who Sold the Farm?

Citizen journalist John ("Dr. Woody/99er") Konopak reminds the easily distracted of the ironies implicit in Bill "Clenis" Clinton's eager and prominent participation in the DNC, given his role, and his regime's complicity, in the demise of Glass-Steagall and the subsequent cataclysmic financial crises which STILL have not run their courses. They ALL KNEW what they were doing! This vid first appeared on World-Wide Hippies dot com, and was also picked up by The Greanville Press dot com, also.<
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Well, hola, there, ladies and gents, boys and girls, hippies and straights around the world. This is your old companero, Dr. Woody--John Konopak, citizen journalist in Albuquerque New Mexico, and today I'm scrambling atop the magnificent and storied WWH/CJE Citizen's Soap-box to discuss one answer to the abiding question: WHO SOLD THE FARM?

By the time you read/hear this, Former President Bill Clinton will have already had prominent role in the unfolding DNC procedings, in Charlotte. His participation will have inevitably been attended by references to the successes of his regime: Lilies gilded to within one tenth of a gram of their carrying capacity, Clinton will bask in acclaim and adulation.

 So, if you are going to subject yourself to the festivities, if you suffer from some irony deficiency, perhaps, and need to stock-pile against some future shortage, I want to focus on just ONE aspect of the Clinton regime which seems to me to be highly glossed-over and will have been carefully avoided in the clamor: His connection and indeed, complicity in the devastating banking crisis of 2007-and onward, the effects of which have not substantially dissipated for average Americans even five years later.

It is worth remembering that it was Bill "Clenis" Clinton who sold the farm on financial deregulation.

At the behest of his crack team of economic superstars, Robert (Citibank) Rubin, Harvard's misogynist Larry Summers, Allen (I call him "Ayn") Greenspan and their towel-boy, Timmeh Geithner at the NYC Fed, Clenis at LEAST turned a blind eye on--if they didn't actually collude with--the plans of Phil Gram and the rest of the  corpoRat-owned Neo-libs in the GOP to repeal Glass-Steagall and reverse significant Depression-era reforms; reforms that were keeping retail and investment "banking" separate, and had mostly kept the psycopathic greed-heads from refucking the Economy, as they had in '29.

 SO: Cui Bono? Who profits, the wise old Roman cynic Cicero always asked with his plangent double dative!

 Obviously: The bankstas, who are genetically averse to risking their OWN money, but who are pathologically eager to risk OTHER PEOPLE'S money and skim the take.

Heretofore, Glass-Steagal had forbidden bankstas from looting commercial assets for extra investment capital. That was what the Glass-Steagall did. But it was stricken, and replaced by Gram-Leach-Bliley which, with a subsequent measure that enabled the credit default swap garbage (the Commodity Futures Modernization Act, 2000; enacted by Clenis on his way out the door toward untold riches)...sowed the seeds for the coming crises.

 Once that was done, what followed in '07-09 was fucking inevitable, and they fucking KNEW it...

 How do I know they knew? The logical process is called "abductive," also "adductive," not to be confused with the silver tape--though they have surprisingly similar properties, with which I won't trouble you now. The question is "How do I know they knew?"

 Ask yourself: Why ELSE would Rubin have so swiftly resigned from the cabinet and scurried, rat-like, over to Citibank, to cash in." Did any of 'em LOSE money? As another Roman said: "Ipso facto! Q.E.D."
 It's a puzzler we can chew over when I see you at the beach, chers...Paz!